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TABLE OF CONTENTS

1.0

Introduction

2.0

1 Objectives
2 Experiment Background
3 Theory/Principle of the Experiment
Methodology

3.0

Results & Discussion

5.0

References

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4.0

Conclusion

INTRODUCTION

The theory is named in honour of Osborne Reynolds, a British engineer who


discovers the variables that can be used as a criterion to distinguish between
laminar and turbulent flow. During the experiment, it is possible to observe the
transition from laminar to turbulent flow after a limiting velocity. The Reynolds
number is used to assess whether the flow is laminar or turbulent. The Reynolds
number is widely used dimensionless parameters in fluid mechanics.
1 Objective
1 To calculate and identify Reynolds number (Re) for the laminar,
transitional and turbulent flow.
2 To observe the characteristics of the flow of a fluid whether it is laminar,
transitional or turbulent.
3 To demonstrate the differences between laminar, turbulent, and
transitional fluid flow.
4 To prove that Reynolds number is dimensionless by using the formula
stated.
2 Experiment background
The equipment consist of hydraulics bench, an Osborne Reynolds apparatus,
tap water, dye, a stopwatch, beaker (100 ml) and measurement cylinder (100
ml). The diameter of the visualization pipe is d= 14.8 mm. The experimental
unit consists of a transparent pipe section through which water flows with flowoptimized inlet. Dye is injected into the flowing water until a coloured stream is
visible along the passage. The volume flow rate is calculated from a volume and
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a known time. The water flow rate is increased by opening the pipe vessel and
the flow pattern of the fluid is observed. The dye injection rate can be controlled
and adjusted to improve the quality of flow patterns.
3 Theory/Principle of the experiment
Reynolds number, Re is the ratio of inertia force to the viscous force where
viscous force is shear stress multiplied area and inertia force is mass
multiplied acceleration. Reynolds determined that the transition from laminar
to turbulent flow occurs at a definite value of the dimensionally property,
called Reynolds number:

Re =

vD

(dimensionless)

Where,
= Density of water (kg/ m3 )

D= diameter of pipe (m)

= dynamic viscosity of the fluid (kg/ms)

v = flow velocity (m/s)

Below are the limiting values of Reynolds number:


Laminar when Re < 2300
Transition when 2300 < Re < 4000
Turbulent when Re > 4000
The motion is laminar or turbulent according to the value of Re is less than
or greater than a certain value. In this experiments, the flowrates are made
with increasing in value, thus transition from laminar to turbulent flow takes
place. The velocity at which the flow in the pipe changes from one type of
motion to the other is known as critical velocity.
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2.0 METHODOLOGY
1. The dye injector is lowered until it is seen in the glass tube.
2. Water supply is established by connecting the inlet hose to a water source.
3. The inlet valve is opened slightly until water trickles from the outlet pipe.
4. A small overflow spillage is ensured through the over flow tube to maintain
a constant level.
5. Water is allowed to settle for a few minutes. Any leakage is checked.
6. The flow control valve is opened fractionally to let water flow through the
visualizing tube.
7. The reservoir of the dye injector is filled with blue ink.

8. The dye control needle valve is adjusted slowly until a slow flow with dye
injection is achieved.
9. The water inlet and outlet valve are regulated until it reach 15mL/s.
10. The ink pattern in observation tube is observed and the picture is taken.
11. The experiment is repeated by using different flow rates: 20,30,40,60 and
70mL/s.
12. After finish the experiment, water supply is stopped and the stilling tank
is drained.

3.0 RESULT AND DISCUSSION


3.1 Figure

Figure 3.0: Ink flow for 15mL/s

Figure 3.1: Ink flow for 20mL/s

Figure 3.2: Ink flow for 30mL/s

Figure 3.3: Ink flow for 40mL/s

Figure 3.4: Ink flow for 60mL/s

Figure 3.5: Ink flow for 70mL/s

3.2 Table
Table 3.0: Type of Flow and Reynolds Number for Different Flowrate
Flow rate, Q (mL/s)

Reynolds Number

Type of flow

15

1450.22

Laminar

20

1928.99

Laminar

30

2893.48

Transitional

40

3874.61

Transitional

60

5803.60

Turbulent

70

6768.09

Turbulent

Calculation of Re for Q= 15 mL/s by using the formula:


Velocity=

Q(m3 s1)
A (m 2)

1
= 0.08721 m s

=1000 kg m3

=8.9 x 104 kg m1 s1

D = 0.0148 m

Therefore, the Reynolds number is:


vD
Re=

(1000 kg m x 0.08721 ms x 0.0148 m)


8.9 x 104 kg m1 s1

=1450.22 (dimensionless)

For other readings (20, 30, 40, 60 and 70 mL/s), the same calculation is
used in order to get the Reynolds number.
Based on the Reynolds number in table and the visual observation, it can
be seen that for flow rates 15mL/s (Figure 3.0) and 20mL/s (Figure 3.1), the
type of flow is laminar with Reynolds number below 2300. For flow rates 30mL/s
(Figure 3.2) and 40mL/s (Figure 3.3), the type of flow is transitional with
Reynolds number from 2300 to 4000 and for flow rates 60mL/s (Figure 3.4) and

70mL/s (Figure 3.5), the type of flow is turbulent with Reynolds number more
than 4000.
It can be seen that in laminar flow, the flow of the blue dye is in a visible,
single line and does not mix much with the water. This shows that in low velocity,
the flow would be laminar. Whereas, in turbulent flow, the flow of blue dye
showed great fluctuation and flows irregularly. This proves that at great velocity,
the flow is turbulent. In the case of transitional flow, it shows both laminar and
turbulent properties. The blue dye flows in a single line with slight fluctuations
in between. Thus in a medium velocity, the flow is in transitional state.
There were few problems faced during the experiment. Firstly, the flow
rates are only estimated thus there might be an error in reading. This can be
prevented by repeating the experiment three times to obtain a much accurate
results. Furthermore, the injection of the blue dye was too thin due to substance
blocking the out flow of the dye. This was solved by rinsing the flow way in high
pressure water. Thirdly, the flow of the blue dye cannot be seen clearly via the
visualizing tube as the flow rate increases. Therefore, a white paper is placed
behind the tube while observing the flow of the blue dye.

4.0 CONCLUSION
In conclusion, as water flow rate is increasing, the Reynolds number will
automatically increase as well and the dye change from straight line to swirling
streamlines. Besides, students are able to calculate and identify Reynolds
number (Re) for the laminar, transitional and turbulent flow. The characteristics
for each pattern of flow and the differences between each flow are observed and
determined. Last but not least, it is proven that Reynolds number is
dimensionless since no unit is representing the value of Reynolds number.

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5.0 REFERENCES
5.1 Book
engel, Y. A. and Cimbala, J. M., 2006, Fluid Mechanics Fundamentals
and Applications, McGraw-Hill, NY.
5.2 Internet
Bruno E. (2009), Turbulence Transition in Pipe Flow, Available at:
http://rsta.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/367/1888/449, Accessed on: 29
March 2015.

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Gunt H. (2005), HM 150.18 Osborne Reynolds Experiment, Available at:


http://www.gunt.de/static/s4563_1.php, Accessed on: 31 March 2015.
Rachel

C.

(2011),

Osborne

Reynolds

Experiment,

Avaiable

at:

https://prezi.com/yia-jutherne/osborne-reynolds-experiment/, Accessed on: 30


March 2015.

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